Andy Young: If the so-called champion is not going to fight then

Andy Young: I deserved a rematch so I don’t know where he’s at… he must be running

An interim title is not what Andy “Taz” Young (10-8) wanted to fight for next and he believes that the current champion Rany “Prince” Saadeh (9-1) should be standing across from him at BAMMA 28 on 24th February.

His debut fight for the promotion at BAMMA 26 last September was a title-shot against Saadeh but it ended in bitter defeat after he’d tested the champion’s abilities for three action-packed rounds.

In his post-fight interview Saadeh even acknowledged the fact that he deserved a rematch, however, that fight has yet to materialise, something which irritates Young.

Speaking to Fightstore Media, Andy Young said, “Originally, I thought it would be an immediate rematch in December but he didn’t take it. Then I thought he’d take the Belfast card but he turned it down again. He said directly after our fight in the octagon that I deserved a rematch so I don’t know where he’s at…he must be running!

“By no exaggeration, I’m twice the fighter I was back in September. I’ve improved leaps and bounds. The longer he waits the more dangerous I become so he better fight me soon.”

With the champion’s belt out of the equation, BAMMA moved quickly to set up an interim title fight against Dominic “The Black Panther” Wooding who is currently undefeated at (3-0).

Young dismissed claims that this was merely an interim title fight.

“They say interim title but if the so-called champion is not going to fight then this is the world title now.

“As nothing else is working then after I win this belt he’ll have to fight me. I don’t know if he’s going to do it. It’s a risky fight for him and I can understand where he’s coming from. But if you’re the champion, and you’re a real fighter then you want to get in there and compete. I like to stay active, that’s what I like to do,” he said.

Wooding is somewhat of an unknown quantity in Ireland. He carries a growing reputation and has stated that nobody wanted to fight him in previous interviews. Young is vastly experienced in comparison and feels confident about accepting the challenge.

“Every undefeated guy I’ve fought I’ve knocked out. I find most guys like that get a false sense of confidence.

“Dominic is predominantly a striker so I expect him to stand and bang. That’s fine by me, I’ll go anywhere. I feel I’m the most well-rounded of anyone in the division. I’ll take the fight wherever I need to get the win,” he said.

The Next Gen N.I flyweight comes into this fight on a high. In his last outing he travelled to the Ukraine and defeated the former WWFC champion via second-round TKO stoppage to add another title to his growing collection.

“I jumped on the opportunity to go out to the Ukraine in December, fight the hometown guy and take that belt. I feel like I’m now on a different level and I’ll be coming for that BAMMA belt next.”

The idea of fighting for a world title in his hometown was something which Yong had dreamt about for years.

“This is going to be amazing! I’ve always dreamt of fighting for the world title in the Odyssey in my hometown. It hasn’t really sunk in yet but I know on the night that it’s going to be electric.

“I was away competing by myself for a long time. But, to be fighting in Belfast along with my teammates Norman, Rhys and Glenn is amazing and we’re all feeding off each other. We have a lot of momentum so I can’t wait,” he said.

With every fight Young grows in confidence.

“I feel a switch like I’m stepping things up. It’s still only the beginning for me. The fight with Saadeh proved that I was world-class. He’d steamrolled through the division. I gave him a hell of a fight and I’m a champion in my mind. I’ll take out any flyweight out there.

He ended our chat by saying, “I know I’m the best flyweight in Europe so I want to get my shot in the UFC this year.”

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Alastair Magee

Recent Journalism graduate with a passion for covering martial arts. Giving amateur and professional fighters in Ireland the coverage they deserve.

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